top of page

The Drowned 

Art. Fables. Memory.

War Crimes. Complicity.

A new film 


Pandora Machine.

The Drowned Girl Act 2.00_04_10_15.Still038.png
The Drowned Girl Act 2.00_00_41_04.Still034.png

As COVID-19 swept across the globe, I finished a play called The Drowned Girl.


Eventually, during the crucible of the pandemic, that play became a film script.


The Drowned Girl explores the complicity of art in totalitarianism and mass slaughter as viewed through the Nazi film industry. It also examines how gender and marriage play out in the making of art.


Yet perhaps the central current of the film is a meditation of the relationship of history and fable.


As the final surviving victims of the Holocaust pass from our midst, the process by which memory is transformed, softened, blurred, or even erased is a vexing question.  


The strategies of art – and the human urge to (over)simplify – combine and conspire with familiar legends and motifs and literature to revise or reinvent even the darkest chapters of human experience.

The Drowned Girl  grapples with the difficult questions raised by history’s tendency to slip into fable. When the river of evidence about the horrors of the Holocaust comes into confluence with Goethe, or Shakespeare, or German legends of water spirits, what happens to memory? Is history doomed to be shaped by these forces? Or do we retain the power to (re)shape fables with our own truth and our own artistic powers, so that the memory of evil burns always at the center of any retelling?

Watch the teaser for The Drowned Girl.

The Drowned Girl was shot between September and December 2021 in Washington, DC, Jersey City and Paterson, NJ, as well as in Manhattan and Brooklyn. We shot it with the safety of our performer and the rest of the team as a top priority.

Annalisa Loeffler plays The Drowned Girl. Andrew Bellware directed and composed music for the film. Paula D’Alessandris was the project’s performance director. Laura Schlachtmeyer produced the film.

Coming soon. 

(Above, right: The writer on The Drowned Girl  set in Paterson, NJ.) 

The writer on the set of The Drowned Girl.
bottom of page